Ethiopia won’t bid for CHAN 2018
Officials of the Ethiopian Football Federation (EFF) announced that Ethiopia has not made any formal bid to host the 2018 African Nations Championships (CHAN) after the Confederation of African Football (CAF) made a decision to strip the hosting duties from Kenya.
CAF announced that three countries – Ethiopia, Equatorial Guinea and Morocco – have requested to replace Kenya as host countries.
However, EFF president, Junedin Basha, stated that Ethiopia has not requested to host the upcoming tournament.
Kenya was announced as the host nation of 2018 CHAN back in February 2016, but last week CAF decided to change the host nation due to lack of enough preparations and the current political unrest in the East African nation.
Following uncertainties from EFF president, CAF again revealed Ethiopia as one of the nations that are bidding to host CHAN 2018.
In this regard, CAF indicated that a new host nation will be announced in October 2017. According to a report by Soccer Ethiopia, the Federation has sent a letter of request to the continental football governing body, but the letter lacks support from the Ethiopian government which is one thing that puts weight on the request.
However, EFF executive committee member, Wendekun Alayou, said: “We did not send a letter to CAF to host CHAN and CAF only named Ethiopia as a country that could host the tournament.”
CAF is expected to pick a new host in the coming 14 days with CHAN 2018 due to take place from January 12 to February 4, 2018. Three of the listed nations have never hosted the African Nations Championship. However, Equatorial Guinea has hosted the African Cup of Nations (AFCON) in 2015, while Morocco recently launched its bid for the 2026 world Cup.
Meanwhile, except Woldia Stadium other international stadiums in Bahir Dar, Mekelle, Hawassa, Nekemte, Dire Dawa and the new one in Addis Ababa are still under construction and with lack of hotels in various regional stadiums, observers says that it would be difficult to host a continental football tournament like CHAN or AFCON.
African Nations Championship will be the 5th edition of the biennial football tournament. 16 participating teams must be composed of players playing in their domestic leagues.
The Ethiopian National Team (Walias) did not qualify as they lost 2-1 on aggregate to Sudan. The team is now preparing for the upcoming 2019 AFCON qualifier matches. Elsewhere, Walias are to play a friendly match against Morocco on October 8, 2017 in Morocco.
This will be their second friendly match after losing 2-0 to Botswana.